The Design Business Association last week held its inaugural 24-hour Inclusive Design Challenge, which aims to promote design for disabled users.
Five groups were challenged to turn around an inclusive design brief at their own studios in just one day, each in collaboration with a disabled volunteer. The winner was voted for by an audience at Imperial College in central London.
Applied Information Group won the competition for Babelfish, a wearable device that provides navigational audio aid for blind people. AIG’s creative director Tim Fendley led the team, which included staff from product design consultancy Tangerine.
Factory Design, Fraserdesign, Sky Interactive and Team A Go-Go also took part in the challenge. Each team was issued with the brief to create an inclusive solution based around public transport. Presentations of the projects were made exactly 24 hours later.
The challenge is sponsored by disability charity Scope and organised in collaboration with the Royal College of Art, running alongside the college’s Include 2005 international conference on inclusive design.
According to DBA chief executive Deborah Dawton, the 24-hour competition will in the future take place annually in addition to the DBA Design Challenge, the existing competition that has a three-month duration.
‘The idea of the competition is to illustrate to businesses what design is capable of and what is possible. If businesses were to extend the scope of their design briefs to include disabled groups, then they could vastly increase the size of their market,’ explains Dawton.